The European Commission has called for a global carbon trading market as part of a plan to tackle climate change.
The EU is already committed to expanding its Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS), but now it is urging other industrialised countries to join in.
The commission says that by 2015 it wants to link the ETS to other carbon trading systems. The goal is to include emerging economies by 2020.
A UN climate conference in Copenhagen in December is to strive for a deal.
The commission proposals presented on Wednesday are designed as the EU’s contribution to the UN debate, with the aim of getting a new global pact on measures to tackle climate change.
EU 20/20/20 TARGETS
20% cut in greenhouse gas emissions by 2020, compared with 1990 levels
20% increase in use of renewable energy by 2020
20% cut in energy consumption through improved energy efficiency by 2020
The pact would be a successor to the 1997 Kyoto Protocol, which was not ratified by the US, the world’s biggest polluter.
The commission, which draws up EU legislation, wants poorer developing countries to put in place plans to cut greenhouse gases.
It says that to cut emissions, more investment will be needed globally – rising to as much as 175bn euros (£162bn) annually by 2020.
More than half of that investment will be needed in developing countries, the commission says.